She regained consciousness where there were no sounds and
smells, save their own. She felt no ceiling; the polished mirror-like
walls were uprising endlessly. The floor was polished, too; it was
warm here and she felt her stolen powers were returning quickly.
7. The eternal forest
She sat up and waited for a moment; the sensation of returning
energy was marvellous and pleasant. The tiredness washed away;
then she saw Nlaminer collapsed beside her and studied him carefully.
He had lost more energy than a normal being could afford to lose;
his mind and body were one step away from death. She felt, though,
that the main danger had been overcome. So she fed him all the energy
she could spare... And then sat, in peace and quiet, enjoying life.
It was wondrous, to be alive.
She felt no contact with the Realm. This place was unusual. She
had no idea how Nlaminer had gotten them there. His amulet, still in
his hand, glowed and emanated warmth and small light - less than a
candle, but enough to see what was around. She took it from his hand
and began studying the surroundings.
They were at was a bottom of a well, with thirty-six polished
mirror walls, forming a regular polygon. A sphere, two feet in
diameter, floated in the middle of the polygon, six feet above the
floor. Rhissa tried to reach it but couldn't; the interior of the
sphere was dark and impenetrable. Nevertheless she felt tremendous
energy hidden in that object; she decided not to touch it. They had
She waited for several hours, without trying to investigate
walls, floor or sphere more closely, when suddenly one of the
walls became transparent and a miraculous landscape opened behind it.
She looked at the amulet; its gems were shining in constant pattern
now; she remembered the pattern and ventured to throw some small
thing through the wall.
It landed on the other side. Sooner or later, she decided, they
would have to experiment going through one of the walls. She felt
that the other side would be suitable to live in; and she quickly dragged
Nlaminer and all their inventory through the portal. Soon after they
were on the other side, the black hole in the air vanished. The gems
ceased to glow simultaneously.
The forest, endless and peaceful, surrounded all land around
them. The hills, ravines and valleys made a freakish landscape, but
here all was full of peace and calmness, the things they both missed
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